Dr Adebayo Bamisebi, a Gynaecologist, says high blood pressure during pregnancy is not deathly, if managed properly.
Bamisebi of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Ibeju-Lekki General Hospital, Akodo, Lagos State, gave the advice in an interview on Tuesday in Lagos.
He however advised women suffering high blood pressure to avoid stress, eat balanced meal and exercise, so as to lower their blood pressure before becoming pregnant.
According to him, high blood pressure during pregnancy is not unsafe if well managed.
“For a woman who has high blood pressure and planning pregnancy, she must maintain her blood sugar by eating smaller, more frequent meals so as to prevent future headaches.
“She has to reduce her weight if overweight, she has to quit smoking if she smokes, she must exercise, reduce her salt intake and stress.
“If she eventually becomes pregnant, she has to regularly see a doctor for check-up so as to know the state of her condition,’’ Bamisebi said.
The gynaecologist explained that high blood pressure, also known as `preeclampsia’, could intensify during pregnancy when not regularly checked.
He also said it could affect a baby’s growth and reduce the nutrient flow through the placenta, urging mothers to always keep track of their baby’s daily movements.
He said the condition which could be fatal, could cause serious damage to the woman’s brain and kidney if left untreated.
Bamisebi also said that it could cause a woman unexplainable headache.
“Headache is not part of symptoms of pregnancy in anyway, but it is most common between the first and third trimester.
“Headache can be part of some other problems like malaria, upper respiratory tract infection and stress, among others,’’ said the expert.
Bamisebi therefore enjoined pregnant women to own a blood pressure monitor to accurately read their blood pressure.
He advised that they took the blood pressure readings at the same arm and time every day while seated with their legs uncross.